Man found dead at Millbrook train station, Southampton, died from drugs and suffocation

Downward spiral led to drug-related death

Downward spiral led to drug-related death

First published in News Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

A MAN who was found in an alleyway near a Hampshire train station died from a combination of drugs and suffocation, an inquest heard.

Originally from Poland, Krzysztof Miska moved to the UK in 2008 with his then-wife Aleksandra Miska, and was found dead on a narrow footpath near Millbrook train station on January 12 by a dog-walker.

His death was treated as suspicious at the time, with police unable to identify him at the scene.

The inquest in Winchester heard how the 29-year-old had been evicted from the flat he shared with Piotr Nowacki, in Foundry Lane in Shirley, due to money problems and had been sleeping on the floor in Piotr’s room.

His marriage broke down in 2012 after he allegedly had sold all their possessions and used the money to buy heroin. He started using the drug five years ago, shortly after the loss of their baby.

He had lost his job as a butcher, and moved to Southampton last year in an attempt to find work.

In the days leading up to his death he took out a two-year mobile phone contract from a Southampton store, and immediately sold the iPhone 5 for £260 cash at a second-hand shop.

The inquest heard how various people had seen him the day before his death in the alleyway, and a docks security guard called the police after finding him lying on the footpath. Mr Miska later woke up and said he did not need assistance.

On the morning of January 12 he was seen crouching on his hands and knees, which Dr Amanda Jeffery, the pathologist who carried out his postmortem, said had restricted his breathing. This was further heightened by the use of heroin, which contains morphine – a drug that depresses the respiratory system.

He had nine needle marks in his arms, which were believed to have been from the hours leading to his death, and was found with drug paraphernalia in his trouser pocket.

Grahame Short, senior coroner for central Hampshire, returned a verdict of drug-related death.

He said: “It is clear that Krzysztof Miska was in a spiral downhill after he became addicted to heroin about five years ago and this led to his wife divorcing him, the loss of his job, and the evidence that he resorted to fraudulently obtaining cash by selling an iPhone. It was an area frequented by drug users and I believe he injected himself. He died as a result of the combined effects of heroin and positional asphyxia.”

Mr Miska’s parents live in Poland, and no family were present.

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